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Vodafone unveils signal boosting brolly

Will appear at the Isle of Wight festival
Thu Jun 14 2012, 14:51
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CRIMSON NETWORK Vodafone has unveiled a "booster brolly" for summer festivals that promises to improve your phone signal while keeping you dry.

Designed by Kenneth Tong of University College London, the quirky umbrella comes with solar cells knit into its canopy alongside extra aluminum struts that act as an antenna.

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"The Vodafone Booster Brolly uses a clever combination of high gain antenna and low power signal repeater to catch radio waves from a Vodafone transmitter, before dispersing a very low intensity signal, creating a small 'signal shower', just above users' heads," the network explains.

"It connects their phones to the network, and even boosts the signal of other Vodafone customers around them."

That's not all this brolly can do, as it also comes with the ability to charge your phone via USB. The handle houses the USB charging unit, which can also be used as a torch for finding your tent when drunk in the dark. Despite all of this technology, the brolly weighs just 800g, perfect for carrying around a festival.

Tong said, "We've put in all of this technology but its not heavy, its not big - and it looks good. In fact, it's a bit of a James Bond umbrella - you can't tell what it does from the outside."

The Vodafone Booster Brolly is still in the concept stage, Tong admits, but it will make its debut at next week's Isle of Wight festival. µ

 

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